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Europa League fixtures between Roma-Sevilla, Inter Milan-Getafe postponed

With Serie A suspended until April 3, Gab Marcotti discusses the possibility of other leagues following suit.
Shaka Hislop says the approach to limit the spread of coronavirus from leagues across Europe is commendable.

The Europa League round-of-16 ties between Roma and Sevilla and Inter Milan versus Getafe have been postponed as the coronavirus continues to affect the world of football.

- Coronavirus: Cancellations and reactions in sports 

"As a result of the travelling restrictions between Spain and Italy imposed yesterday by the Spanish authorities, the following UEFA Europa League Round of 16 matches [Sevilla-Roma and Inter-Getafe] will not take place as scheduled tomorrow, 12 March 2020," UEFA confirmed in a statement.

With Italy on lockdown, Roma had announced they could not travel to Sevilla to play their Europa League match scheduled for Thursday, as their plane was not authorised to land in Spain. The match was originally due to take place behind closed doors.

Getafe, meanwhile, had also said they would not fly to Italy to face Inter Milan.

"AS Roma will not travel to Spain for the Europa League match against Sevilla after the plane from Italy was not authorised to land in Spain," a statement on Roma's Twitter page read.

Getafe president Angel Torres said the team would not go to Inter in their round-of-16 clash.

Asked if was is willing to risk forfeiting the game, Torres said: "I don't understand why they would do so. It's a state of emergency, we are doing the right thing. First is health, then sport. I have no interest in the consequences.

"What I'm interested in is not bringing more [coronavirus] cases to Spain, as we have already too many. I will meet with my captains and the coach and I will tell them of my decision, but it's my responsibility and I believe I'm doing the right thing."

Sevilla vs. Roma in the Europa League is the latest match to be affected by the coronavirus.
 

Manchester United's clash with Austrian side LASK will go ahead behind closed doors on Thursday. In the Champions League round of 16 on Wednesday, Paris Saint-Germain's clash with Borussia Dortmund will take place without fans, with star player Kylian Mbappe testing negative for the virus. Spectators will be allowed in to watch Liverpool versus Atletico Madrid.

The football world has been severely affected by the coronavirus with La Liga staging at least the next two rounds of fixtures behind closed doors, with Manchester City's match against Arsenal in the Premier League postponed.

Serie A has been suspended until April 3, while the players' unions in Italy and Spain have called for postponements to other fixtures.

Elsewhere, German second-division club Hannover 96 confirmed one of their players, Timo Hubers, has tested positive for the coronavirus. It is the first confirmed case in German football.

In a statement released by Hannover 96 on Wednesday, the club said that "it is expected Hubers was infected at event on Saturday in (nearby) Hildesheim."

They added that he had not had any contact with his teammates since and is in quarantine at home.

"Regardless, we will act responsibly and test the entire squad and staff for the virus," the club said.

Information from ESPN's Stephan Uersfeld and Adriana Garcia was used in this report.

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